All the News That’s Fit to Eat: Obama Acts on Antibiotics, Cargill Sues Syngenta, and a Winery Shutters

Laguna Lake in San Luis Obispo dries out during the California drought. Photo credit: docentjoyce via Flickr.

Check out some of the food news stories that grabbed our attention this week. 1. White House Unveils Plan to Curb Antibiotic Resistance (Various) President Obama released a plan to combat the rise of antibiotic resistant bacteria, a problem the administration says poses a “serious threat to public health, national security, and the economy.” Highlights of the plan… Read More

This St. Paul Artist Hosted 2,000 People For a Meal and a Conversation About the Food System

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It’s a Sunday afternoon in the Frogtown neighborhood of St. Paul, Minnesota and we’re sitting down to an outdoor supper. A breeze lifts up our paper plates and placemats and everyone dives at the table to hold them down. A man wandering past waves at someone a few seats over. “We haven’t met,” he says, “but I recognize you. How are you?” Read More

Want to Send Healthy Food to Your Child’s Daycare? You Might Need a Doctor’s Note

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Imagine a daycare center serving your child doughnuts or Pop Tarts and then demanding proof of your child’s medical “disability” when you ask to send healthier food from home. As bizarre as that scenario may sound, it’s one that parents around the country may face if they send their children to daycare centers participating in the federal Child and Adult Food Care Program (CACFP). Read More

Want to Be an Artisan Cheesemaker? Here’s Where to Start

Cheesemaking class at Sterling College.

There are two stories about the artisan cheesemaker’s life: The fantasy, filled with bleating goats, calm country days, homemade wine, and an enviable supply of chèvre, and the reality, which looks more like a scientific laboratory with a lot of dishes to wash. As most cheesemakers will tell you, their craft is an incredible alchemy of grass, sunshine, and milk, but it’s no tres leches cakewalk. Read More

Invoking the Cherished Bake Sale to Undermine Healthier School Snacks

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Back in November, 2010, only a few months after starting The Lunch Tray, I wrote about running my children’s elementary school Election Day bake sale.  In that post I expressed a little bit of ambivalence about selling sweets to raise money  — ambivalence that would evolve over the next four years into outright activism against junk food in schools  —  but at the time I was clearly charmed by the old-timey, innocent feel of the event.  I wrote:

. . . . the bake sale I’m running today couldn’t be more Norman Rockwell: there are flags and buntings everywhere, kids clamoring to take a turn behind the cash box, and almost all the goods are homemade.

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The Vermont Paradox: Youth Program Takes on Hunger and Chronic Disease in a Locavore State

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A visitor who swings by the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps (VYCC) on a Wednesday afternoon will see rows opened boxes lined up across the barn floor. Farm crew members between the ages of 15 and 18 are distributing the week’s harvest evenly between the boxes. Some sort tomatoes while others weigh and bag green beans over a small table. On the wall behind them is a whiteboard with a chart. Stephanie Bartlett, a 15-year-old with a chestnut brown ponytail, tallies 464 pounds of cucumbers and 448 pounds of squash. Read More